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Monday January 09, 2012 | 12:12 PM

More federal funds are arriving in Maine to help pay for damage to roads and bridges caused last August by Tropical Storm Irene.

The U.S. Department of Transportation today announced that the state is getting $2.97 million, part of a pot of nearly $1.6 billion being released nationally. Congress approved the money last year.

The money has been expected, but its arrival is a welcome and continued federal emergency relief assistance payback for money already spent by the state, said Ted Talbot, spokesman for the Maine Department of Transportation.

The state already had received about $1 million in federal road and bridge relief funding, so this hikes the total to date to about $4 million. In all, the state hopes to get a total of $5.9 million to help pay for Irene-related road and bridge repairs, Talbot said.

Much of the money will help pay for nearly $4 million worth of repairs to and around a pair of Route 27 bridges in the Carrabassett Valley leading to Sugarloaf Mountain that were destroyed by Irene.

“This is all going according to plan,” Talbot said about the continued infusion of federal relief aid.


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Kevin Miller is Washington bureau chief for the Portland Press Herald and MaineToday Media. He has worked as a journalist in Maine for 6 ½ years, covering the environment, politics and the State House. Before arriving in Maine, he wrote about politics, government and education for newspapers in Virginia and Maryland.
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